ARCHITECTURE AND ART 293 American collector. Nor was the fame of Persian stuffs and colours unknown in medieval Europe, light blue material being termed "pers" in English, as in other languages of the day. Painting.—By Moslem rule the human figure cannot be represented in art. Fortunately this was subject to exceptions, and descriptions are extant of pictures painted in the schools of Damascus, Baghdad and Cairo, in which such figures appear. Few of the works of these artists have survived, but the Austrian traveller Musil discovered in the Syrian desert figure paintings of the eighth century. The most important is a large picture in which the Byzantine Emperor, the Caliph and the Chosroes are pourtrayed ; other figures of the ninth century have been found at Samarra. The frescoes dis- covered by Stein at Khotan may also be studied.1 Among the earliest dated miniature paintings—and in Persian art pictures on a small scale are the best—is a work of the Abbasid school from Baghdad, the date of which, A.D. 1222, is beyond dispute. It shows strongly the influence of Byzantine art. But this art was soon almost forgotten, and shortly afterwards Chinese influence became equally strong, only to be shaken off in its turn. The sack of Baghdad by Hulagu in A.D. 1258 is believed to have dealt the death-blow to Arab art based on old tradition, and at the same time to have given birth to true Persian art. This at first was Persian Mongolian, still showing traces of Byzantine influence. Its promise was great, greater indeed than its accomplishment, for the overpowering desire for material beauty mastered all idea of dramatic pourtrayal. At the end of the fourteenth century, by which time Tamerlane had conquered Persia, the art had reached its zenith. There is a perfect equilibrium between drawing and colour, but the appeal is made by the artist to the eye, and to the eye alone ; in other words, the soul is wanting. The general impression is that of a scene pourtrayed with a mass of colours, skilfully blended to 1 I have consulted Dr. Martin's Miniature Paintings and Painters of Persia, etc.; also Gayet's L'Art person. I have to thank Dr. Diets, of the University of Vienna, for the note on Musil's discovery.